New support for distance learning postgraduate students

Access to tuition fee and living cost loans expanded.

Tuition fee loans of £5,500 are to be made available to distance learning students on taught postgraduate courses from next year.

Full-time distance learning postgraduate students will also be able to access a £4,500 living cost loan for the first time. The expansion of support could benefit more than 2,500 students. 

This builds on additional loan support provided this year to eligible students on taught postgraduate courses, which has helped contribute to an increase in the number of  applications for support from full-time students in 2017-18. It follows on from last year, where a record 143,110 full-time students across higher education benefited from £834.8 million in support.

Further & Higher Education Minister Shirley-Anne Somerville, said:

“Undergraduates in Scotland already have free tuition, saving tens of thousands of pounds over the course of a degree compared to those in the rest of the UK.

“This funding builds on that by expanding help to postgraduates to fund the cost of their fees. Expanding access to tuition fee loans and living cost loans could benefit up to 2,500 students across the country and enable more people to consider studying for postgraduate qualifications.

“We want to make further and higher education as accessible as possible and this positive step will help more people overcome the financial barriers to gaining new qualifications.”


Tuition fee support will be expanded to all eligible full and part-time distance learning students on taught postgraduate diploma and masters courses, living in Scotland from the next academic year.

A living-cost loan of £4,500 will also be made available to full-time students taking distance learning postgraduate courses.

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